sunrise a momentary dream field

sunrise image

december

1.
humanity’s trees
will see what happens
in the middle of nowhere

thanks for the update and for
the only thing that
the only thing is

[all but the first line written with keyboard suggestions]

2.
southeastward yellow
sunrise unfurls its
brief banner of buoyant blue

sky a longing lavender
ladder to climb out
of darkening thoughts

3.
clouds above below
the morning fog that
rubs its back along the hills

sunrise a momentary
dream field of faintly
glowing marigolds

4.
again great river
bring down new colors
ravaged tinged periwinkle

blanched silverfringed brakelight orange
long-distance lovelight
mirrored memories

5.
morning’s rhythmic
glacial paradox
speed of light and enormous

infinitesimal near-
ness near pausing
distantly changing

6.
drab slab of monday
sky like a weak nudge
when a hammer’s what’s needed

to crush the brain’s hard dark beans
and steep them in light
to negate the night

7.
the bridge to winter
carries my gray dreams
over the great gray river

reflecting the absence of
the consolation
of sunrise or sleep

8.
immaculate sun
rising in the wind
bursting from under blankets

of clouds a woman waking
on her fortieth
birthday breathing light

9.
the disappointment
of seeking sunrise
in the sadness of a town

a pretty how town but sad
in its brushfire heart
and cloud drift dream light

*
cauldron of morning
burning through bare limbs
over unaware rooftops

distant furnace fire glowing
deep in the heart of
impending winter

10.
the gods’ persimmons
glowing in the east
queen of heaven pray for us

and clouds like fermenting plums
storing drunken sleep
for the winter blues

11.
a river’s disguise
of cloud-cloaked sunrise
at the railroad bridge at dawn

a light afoot that muggles
don’t notice climbs a
dark enormity

12.
humble lovely bridge
unassuming violet
clouds with creamy bright

curlicues of light
dispelling autumnal night
and darkness’s arc

13.
cable bridge sunrise
black dog rabbitbrush
river flowing in the now

carrying gifts to the sun
frankincense skyline
clouds of mystic myrrh

14.
the sun is rising
behind a curtain
of dark and light shades of blue

behind the blue bridge that spans
the big blue river
glistening with birds

15.
beguiled by colour
three time zones away
when i woke far too early

and my co-conspirator
televideoed
what i then screenshot

16.
thin band of faintly
gleaming alice blue
sandwiched by bland grey above

and the numb brown of autumn’s
somber surrender
to winter below

17.
words are too worn out
or not worn enough
insufficient to the task

they can only fall prostrate
to the snowy ground
and stammer eastward

18.
approaching solstice
no sun evident
just snow and fog and the sound

of the day reluctantly
getting underway
and blessëd coffee

19.
this is what passes
for sunrise winter
standing at the door smiling

grimly icy sickle teeth
somber cloudy shrouds
and christmas cookies

20.
flying towards sunrise
breathing burning coals
glowing from last night’s campfire

clouds are smoldering ashes
powdery and dark
the airplane my tent

21.
reconciled to snow
back yard relaxes
into the mind of winter

pandemic blessings
glad isolation
gold nugget sunrise

22.
jesus in the snow
nature’s new year’s day
you want to travel with him

and you want to travel blind
across the water
to that paradise

23.
clouds stained with the night
drift casually
over sweet potato skies

the river used to freezing
this time of year gives
itself to sunrise

24.
tanager-like sun
beginning its slow
migration from solstice day

towards the spring equinox
furtively orange
bringing glad tidings

25.
sun costuming clouds
on christmas morning
out the window all we see

is snow falling on the warm
antiquity of
self and flakes of love

26.
behold the sunrise
masked to protect us
from deadly december rays

the virus of happiness
that would infect us
if we dare let it

27.
no one waiting here
hear the beating heart
now here now nowhere no one

the heart of winter waiting
no one hearing now
here one sunrise pulse

28.
winter means something
snow some nothing thing
hiding something underneath

sunrise hidden like a bulb
a magic nothing
a secret something

29.
there is no sunrise
no rise no risen
sun hidden within itself

keeping its own secret safe
for the hills and trees
frozen in their dreams

30.
the bleak midwinter
the bleak midwinter
the bleak midwinter the bleak

midwinter is in my soul
sunrise on my mind
the bleak midwinter

31.
we wake up and drive
to the horizon
to inspect the frozen fog

concealing the last sunrise
of this year of grace
the day of your birth

What I did on my summer vacation

These Guys Want to Have a Few Words with You

blog copy

Did you hear? Next Sunday, you ought to get drunk at Mass.

But in a sober way, of course.

That’s what the Liturgy Guys were saying during one of their recent podcasts.

But what do they know?

 

 

“And the Darkness Did Not Comprehend It”

saint-francis-borgia-helping-a-dying-impenitent-goya

An early December story in The Hollywood Reporter recounts the first time that Hollywood actress Meryl Streep and legendary director Steven Spielberg met. “Most of the time,” Streep recalled in the December 5 story by Peter Galloway, she and Spielberg “talked about how his property was haunted and did I know anybody who did exorcisms? And of course, I did. I got him a priest.”

This comment from a member of the Hollywood community might come as a surprise to some people. After all, Streep works for the same business that produced a legion of movies about the devil—from Rosemary’s Baby to The Omen to The Exorcist—all in one way giving the devil more than his due by sensationalizing evil. Sure, images of devil and hellfire help maximize ticket sales—but do people in Hollywood actually believe all this Satan stuff?

While it’s not clear from The Hollywood Reporter story whether the famed director rid his house of the suspected evil, it is clear that even those who make fantasies for a living accept that the devil is real and that when he shows up on its doorstep, even the world of make-believe knows there’s only one place to turn: the Catholic Church.

Perhaps implicit in Streep’s recommendation to Spielberg is an understanding that believer and non-believer alike acknowledge, grudgingly or not—that the Catholic Church alone offers a direct, no-nonsense and effective solution to demonic affliction…

READ THE REST HERE

Mars Hill, J.F. and JOB

powers typewriter

“I think what Powers is trying to say is ‘No look, there’s a whole other side: there’s a lot of boring Tuesday afternoon at 4 o’clock stuff going on in the priesthood.’ And I think that’s what he wanted to show. I think he wanted to show that the priesthood was not glamorous, but that there was a profound struggle going on.”

Happy Feast of Saint Rita

Here’s a little bit from the oratorio I helped with, performed last year in Dallas.

CHORUS
Good Friday. Day of evil deeds
The lamb is slaughtered, pierced and hung
The heavenly choir stills its tongue
And weeps as the Almighty bleeds

Now love reveals its awful cost
And silence meets the anguished cry
I am abandoned, Father, why?
Now God is hid, now man is lost

TOMAS
I woke last night to nothing
No light or sound had stirred me
Nor lover’s touch, I was alone
Nothing woke me, as I said
And nothing found me when I woke
Nothing waited for my waking
Just as nothing waits upon my dying
But death – now death is something
The only certain thing in life
And only pain can hope to match
Its claim of universal reach
Do I sound glib? It’s how I cope
For nothing fills the hole that God has left.
And what is to be done? Why, nothing.

This sounds vaguely familiar…

But I could swear it takes place on the West Coast – in a place like Seattle or something…

Remember This Guy?

heydrich

He made his Korrektiv debut here.

And now Hollywood – or at least Czechslovkiawood – found him. 

So now we await the word of a famous film kritik, whom we all know and admire, on whether Korrektiv gets to kollekt any royalties from the movie…

 

 

Race Relations in Seattle

So I’m waiting for my ride at 5th and Jackson, when my bus driver friend Gary (older black gentleman, very nice, but very formal) drives up in the #14. A lady with tattoos on her face staggers towards the bus as I’m talking to him, so I step back to let her on, rolling my eyes to let Gary know he’s got a real winner coming on board. She’s just trashed, and being Caucasian, I guess that makes her White Trash (in this part of town, it’s probably 50/50 odds the inebriated person is black or white. The Asians are rarely wasted, or they never show it, and I won’t even mention the Native Americans).

Anyway, after the drunk Caucasian lady stumbles past Gary, he looks at me and says, “That’s one of your people, Finnegan.” Then he closes the door and drives on up Jackson.

Maybe you’d need to know Gary, but it was funny as hell.

Now, if our roles were reversed, could I say the same thing, and would it be funny? Obviously no, and I think it could be justifiably considered a racist comment. Doesn’t that mean that Gary’s comment is racist as well? What’s fair (or unfair) for someone on the basis of race must be fair or unfair for someone of a different race, right?

Only if you’re an idiot. The manner in which people of different races, especially blacks and whites, view one another has a long history in this country, and ignoring it, or trying to ignore it, turns us into fools. People are different. We treat different people differently, and that’s just the way it is.

No, it doesn’t mean racism is a laughing matter. Neither, in most or at least many circumstances, are drunkenness and tattooed faces. And I’m not sure how well this story would play in front of a crowd, told by a comedian. In fact, this seems like a pretty good illustration of the difference between what’s funny for professional comedians, and what it means to have a sense of humor in the midst of whatever life happens to throw at you. The former can be enjoyable, but the latter is necessary so that life doesn’t become unbearable.

Save the date

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Screen Shot 2015-10-27 at 7.31.25 PM

The Novel May or May Not Be Dead …

… according to a magazine nobody bothers to read any more. I think this article is mostly, or probably, or at least hopefully a load of crap, but the subject is certainly on a lot of people’s minds. Maybe because a lot of people want to write novels, but still … c’mon now!

The novel still stands, sure enough, but it stands uneasily, a kitschy McMansion whose vocabulary is steadfastly outdated, a form that can only look backward. I can’t think of a single full-length novel published in 2014 that did anything new. Most of the ones I read rehashed the same realistic formula that has held at least since Raskolnikov wandered through St. Petersburg’s dingy courtyards.

A McMansion? Really? Might this have more to do with which particular shelf you choose to browse?

And don’t forget that Korrektiv has a couple of novels, or one novel and one novella qua screenplay, available for your reading pleasure just as soon as you can tear your eyes away from this screen.

My Email to Garrison Keillor re. Walker Percy

Dear Mr. Keillor,

You and Walker Percy both occupy honored places in my personal constellation of literary stars.

That’s why I was shocked and disappointed by your treatment of Dr. Percy in the May 28, 2014 edition of The Writer’s Almanac. Percy never worked as a psychiatrist. In fact, although he was an M.D., he never really practiced medicine. He contracted tuberculosis while conducting autopsies during a residency in pathology at the end of medical school.

And that synopsis of The Moviegoer (which thankfully only appears in the printed version of TWA) is just as horribly askew. Binx Bolling is a stockbroker who goes to the movies but “in an attempt to get over a nervous breakdown” reeks of having been pulled out of someone’s ass who never read the book and doesn’t really care.

I’m not sure I can trust what you say on TWA anymore.

Maybe what you need is a crusty old librarian who cares about real facts and knows how to dig into reliable sources. Coincidentally, I am just such a librarian (and poor starving poet to boot, having earned $100 from TWA, thank you very much, and about $3.95 in royalties since publishing my book). I would be interested in supplementing my meager poet-librarian’s salary, if you’re hiring.

I didn’t start off this email thinking it would turn into a job application, but the spirit surprises us sometimes.

Let me know what you think. In any case, I’m looking forward to what you come up with for Walker Percy the next time his birthday comes round.

All the best,
Jonathan Potter
Spokane WA

From the Korrektiv HR Dept.

bus sg

Wisconglish for “Mass Transit System Career Opportunities – Now Hiring!”

Jobe?

Webb?

Lucrative Perks…the parking lot in which the vehicle is located belongs to a newly opened microbrewery…Sunshine more than three days a year (even when it’s 40 degrees below zero!)… and, as always, unique camping experiences.

The E-Book and the Surveillance Society

ebook-society-final

The Mule

His modus operandi was to take the trolley
downtown from James, buds in his ears, shades,
a trench coat rain or shine, and sheet music
for songs by Porter, Gershwin, and Schubert.
When I once called him maestro, he protested
loudly, his arms waving up and down so vivace
his mack fluttered like a tailcoat at the podium.
On the last trip I saw him he was too decrepit
to use the stairs, and gestured for the lift
with a much more measured use of his hand, lento.
Months later I was told by another passenger
how he’d been busted for muling oxycodone
out of Harborview, in a disguise hiding
the means by which an old man lived for music.

Good Country People: Play Me lyric video

I drank a bunch of drinks…

image_t670

In San Diego, no less.

I edited an edition

tuscany ss book

Dear Korrektiv Konsumers, I humbly ask that you go forth and buy or steal this book

And then write all kinds of nice things about it in the reviews… A beer in it for you! OK, fine! The cocktail of your choice and grilled steak!

(But you have to come to Wisconsin to claim them!)

JOB